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Countywide Rivers Alive event set for Saturday
Karen Bell
Keep Liberty Beautiful Executive Director Karen Bell. - photo by Denise Etheridge

Keep Liberty Beautiful invites you to our countywide Rivers Alive event this Saturday as we focus on protecting our many diverse waterways throughout Liberty County.  

For over a decade, Rivers Alive has served as a fun and rewarding way for communities statewide to get involved with the protection of Georgia’s water resources.  Rivers Alive is a statewide effort to preserve and protect our waterways in Georgia. 

Rivers Alive is sponsored by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Environmental Protection Division’s Environmental Outreach Program. 

Rivers Alive events are also part of the international efforts of The Ocean Conservancy. In Liberty County, we hold our main Rivers Alive Event Day on national Make a Difference Day, which is on this Saturday, October 26, 2019. 

My reading this week was about the importance of keeping water clean and I came across the Clean Water Act (CWA).  The Clean Water Act created the basic foundation for regulating discharges of pollutants into the waters of the United States and regulating quality standards for surface waters. 

The basis of the CWA was enacted in 1948 and was called the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, but the Act was widely known and expanded in 1972. 

Under the Clean Water Act, Environmental Protection Division has employed pollution control programs such as setting wastewater standards for industry. The EPA has also developed national water quality criteria recommendations for pollutants in surface waters.

The Clean Water Act made it unlawful to discharge any pollutant from a point source into navigable waters, unless a permit was obtained. EPA’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program controls discharges. 

Point sources are separate passages such as pipes or man-made ditches. Individual homes that are connected to a municipal system, use a septic system, or do not have a surface discharge do not need an NPDES permit; however, industrial, municipal, and other facilities must obtain permits if their discharges go directly to surface waters.

A part of the Environmental Protection Division ensures that Georgia’s public water systems are operating properly to supply safe drinking water to citizens, and controls nonpoint sources of pollution through grants and volunteer programs such as Rivers Alive and Adopt-a-Stream. 

This is one reason why Keep Liberty Beautiful asks for volunteers to help with cleanups like Rivers Alive.  Plan to make a difference with Keep Liberty Beautiful this Saturday. You can sign up online at SignUpGenius and search for klcb@libertycountyga.com or you can contact Keep Liberty Beautiful at (912) 880-4888 or  email klcb@libertycountyga.com.   

Our waterways need YOU!  Do not take clean water for granted! Join us for Rivers Alive!

Karen Bell is executive director of Keep Liberty Beautiful. 


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